I never had a casserole growing up. Not even a bite of one of those canned french fried onions! Imagine that!
Casseroles always piqued my curiosity. These four ingredient dishes that look so easy and convenient. What could be wrong with that? Of course the ingredients scared me. A can of this with a bag of that and throw in some can of cream soup. Yikes! MSG + Fat + unidentified objects. Seriously? I'm supposed to eat that?
This year was the first year I was hosting Thanksgiving. I wanted to do it right. Wanted to bring in some of that "traditional" American Thanksgiving that I didn't grow up with.
One of the iconic dishes that comes with tradition is the green bean casserole.
How could I make it kosher and tasty and healthier was my question.
Here is what I came up with.
Vegan Green Bean Casserole (adapted from a recipe on vegweb.com)
1.5 cups vegetable broth
1 onion, chopped
1 cup baby bell mushrooms, chopped
1 carrots, diced
4 cloves garlic, smashed and chopped
basil, a few leaves, chopped
oregano, a bunch of leaves, chopped
sage leaves, a few - chopped
thyme, a few sprigs, chopped
2 tbsp. corn starch
3 tbsp. cold water
16oz. cut green beans (I used frozen)
1.5 cans of those crunchy french fried onions (I found them at whole foods and trader joes)
Preheat oven to 350.
In a saucepan, heat the soy milk and broth.
In another pan, saute the onions, garlic, mushrooms, and carrots. Add the herbs. I like to add a teaspoon or two of cayenne to bump up the heat a bit, but it's purely optional. Saute on medium until everything is soft.
In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch with the cold water. Add it to the broth mixture to thicken it.
Add the green beans and sauteed veggie mixture to the broth mixture. Mix in a half a can of the fried onions. Pour the mixture into a baking pan. I used a 9x9 pan, but I could have used something slightly larger. Sprinkle more fried onions over the top.
Bake for 20 minutes.
To be honest, I was surprised that I actually liked this. It had some sort of comforting taste to it. I probably won't make it again for at least another year. It's not bad though. Just not what we are used to eating. You have to make it once, though. Enjoy!